www.whyville.net Dec 26, 2004 Weekly Issue

Media Specialist

Media Menu

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Greetings, TV viewers!

Some broadcast and cable programs contain material included in the public school curriculum and on standardized examinations. Here are home viewing suggestions for December 27 - January 2, 2004.

There will be no Media Hour for the next week. Enjoy your new year! In the meantime, check out our new format for the Media Menu! I hope it's even easier to read!

In future Media Hours, the folks who have seen the shows and really read the related websites will be able to help us to focus our discussion, exploring what everyone thinks and reminding us to think about what was in the shows and on the websites. Come to the Media Hour prepared and you will be invited down on stage, and you may earn clams, too!

What's the Media Hour? Watch the show(s)-of-the-week, jot down some ideas, then come and talk about them with me and other citizens (including other City Workers, if they're available). We get together at the Greek Theater (next to City Hall), every Saturday morning at 9 a.m., Whyville Time. (Whyville Time is now the same as Pacific Standard Time.) You'll find that the Theater makes discussions pretty easy, since City Workers are able to direct people's movement and behavior, when we need to, and it makes everyone's chat bubbles overlap a little less than other rooms.

Monday, December 27
6-7 p.m. E/P
HIST (History Channel) History and Social Science High School
"The Worst Jobs In History: The Victorians"

This is an episode in a documentary series which shows that the "good old days" weren't so good. The program's host demonstrates the really dirty jobs of Victorian England, including several on the railway (engine and ash-pan cleaners) and navvies -- an army of itinerant laborers who dug the roads, canals, docks, sewers, and tunnels by hand. Next, he looks at child labor and the tasks assigned to tots, like dibbling (poking holes to sow seeds), herring caller (spotting gulls to alert fishermen to a shoal), stone collector (to clear fields), and chimney sweep. He tries his hand at rat catching, label sticking (a job held by Charles Dickens as a lad), cigar collector, bone grabber, dustman, tosher (sewer hunter), mud lark (shoreline scavenger), stone breaker, oakum picker (deconstructing old rope), and the smelly job of tanner (scraping the flesh off dead animals to make leather). Think your job is tedious? After this hour you might change your mind! TVPG

Monday, December 27
9-10:30 p.m. E/P
PBS American History Middle and
High School

"Woodrow Wilson"

This is Part I of a two part miniseries about U.S. President Wilson. An intellectual with unwavering moral principles, he became one of America's greatest presidents. Incapacitated by a stroke, Wilson carried out his duties from bed with the help of his wife, Edith, who became the de facto chief executive. Part II airs January 3. TV-PG

More info at http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/amex/presidents/28_wilson/index.html.

Tuesday, December 28
2-3:30 p.m. E/P
HIST (History Channel) World History/Technology High School

"Inside North Korea"

This is a documentary about North Korea. When the leaders of that nation admitted that it had reconstituted its nuclear weapons program, a spotlight shone on a country that for 50 years had been shielded from the eyes of the Western world. Starting with its creation in the aftermath of WWII, the program focuses on the only two leaders in North Korean history -- Kim Il-Sung and his son Kim Jong-Il -- and tracks theirs nuclear weapons program, from beginnings in the 1960s though the current crisis. The program ends with an emotional reunion between a South Korean woman and her brother. Separated at the end of the Korean War, they were finally reunited in 2003 as part of a policy to relax tensions between North and South Korea. TVPG

Tuesday, December 28
9-10 p.m. E/P
PBS Science/Health Middle School
High School
"The Alternative Fix"
This is a documentary about the recent rise of popularity of complementary and alternative medicine. Under pressure from everyone, consumers and Congress, major hospitals and medical schools have embraced therapies that they once dismissed as quackery. The program examines the controversy over alternative medical treatments.
You can download information about the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's investigation of these medicines and procedures at http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/shows/altmed.

Wednesday, December 29
5-5:30 p.m. E/P
HIST (History Channel) World History High School
"History's Turning Points: The Incredible March"
This is a documentary about the beginnings of the People's Republic of China. Mao Tse-Tung the leader of China's Communist First Front Army flees the forces of his archenemy, the nationalist Chiang Kai-Shek. Mao and his 100,000-strong peasant army battle against the Nationalists and nature itself, fleeing over 6,000 miles through 12 provinces, over 18 mountain ranges, and across 24 rivers in an epic test of human endurance. Only 6,000 men survive, but Mao lives to become the undisputed father of Chinese communism, and 14 years after his epic journey, becomes Chairman of the People's Republic of China. With exclusive dramatizations carried out at the actual sites of events, we reveal the principal characters whose unique personalities, dilemmas, and conflicts, influenced the outcome in this pivotal moment in history. TVPG

Thursday, December 30
3:30-4 p.m. E/P
HIST (History Channel) Science/History High School
"Great Scientists: Charles Darwin"
This is a biographical documentary about the life and times of Charles Darwin -- a failed student from a rich family whose 5-year voyage around the world inspired him to write "The Origin of Species" outlining his Theory of Evolution. It caused outrage in society at the time -- and still does today. TVPG

Thursday, December 30
4-4:30 E/P
HIST (History Channel) Science/History High School
"Great Scientists: Albert Einstein"
This documentary uses film, animation and humorous dramatizations to explain how a clerk in a Swiss patent office became a Nobel prize-winner and the most influential scientist of modern times. Albert Einstein gave us the world's most famous equation (E=mc??) and the Theory of Relativity -- a work so complex that at the time only two other people could make sense of it. Using train sets and go-carts, the program simplifies Einstein's complex ideas. TVPG

Friday, December 31
9-11:30 p.m. E/P
PBS Arts/Music Middle and High School
"Washington National Opera: Die Fledermaus"
This classical music broadcast provides an easy introduction of the art of the opera. It's sung in English and the subject is not murder -- as in so many operas -- but only love triangles like so many classic novels that are used in school today. In this case it's a story of love in 1890s Vienna and combines French farce with Viennese dance music and features some of Johann Strauss, Jr.s' best melodies, including the Fledermaus (The Bat) waltz. This comedy of errors, centers on a gentlewoman, her would-be boyfriend, her husband, a masquerade ball and hidden identities. The ball scene features a cameo appearance by renowned tenor Pl??cido Domingo. Heinz Fricke conducts the Washington National Opera Orchestra.

Saturday, January 1
2-4 p.m. E/P
HIST (History Channel) American History Middle and High School
"The Real American Cowboy"
This documentary is intended to present a depiction of the true American cowboy -- a common laborer who worked from his horse. Actors Richard Farnsworth and Harry Carey Jr., started out in life as working cowboys -- and in their movie roles helped reveal the difference between a Hollywood cowboy and the real thing. Beginning with Spanish and eventually Mexican vaquero to Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show and beyond, the image the cowboy evolved over a period of 300 years.

Sunday, January 2
1-4 p.m. E/P
A&E (A&E Channel) Classic Literature/World History High School
"The Man In The Iron Mask"
This recent movie version of the Alexandre Dumas' classic novel has Leonardo DiCaprio in the role of a Frances Louis IV -- and in the role of his brother. Young Louis was not nice, nor does Leo play him as a nice young man. There's lots of European history going on here as The Three Musketeers come out of retirement to save France from the tyrannical grip of Louis, who has put his own brother in an iron mask and imprisoned him to prevent him from ever claiming the throne. TVPG for dramatic situations.

Sunday, January 2
8-9 p.m. E/P
HIST (History Channel) Ancient History Middle and High School
"The True Story Of Hannibal"
This is a documentary about one of history's greatest military leaders. At age nine Hannibal accompanied his father, Carthaginian General Hamilcar Barca, on an expedition from their home in Africa to conquer Spain. Before embarking, the boy vowed eternal hatred for the Roman Empire, his people's bitter rival. Twenty years later, in 218 BC, he left New Carthage (now Cartagena, Spain) to wage war on Rome with an army of about 40,000, including cavalry and elephants. After crossing the Pyr??n??es and Rh??ne River, he crossed the Alps despite snowstorms, landslides, and hostile mountain tribes. The program brings to life the story of the North Africans who wreaked havoc with their masterful military tactics, bringing the Roman Republic to the brink of ruin.


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